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Readers Respond: Amusing Excuses For Being Late For Work

Responses: 97


From the article: Late For Work Excuses
Employees come up with many interesting, amusing excuses for being late for work. What is the best, most amusing excuse you have heard?

Run Away!!!

I called my boss one morning to tell her I was going to be late... There was a bear in the dumpster next to the car! I even have photos of the visiting bear when he tipped my freezer over but missed the shot of him sitting on my back porch! At the time I lived in the city....well Anchorage, Alaska if you count that as a city! My other one was called in one morning late because there was a moose between me and the car! Yup! Both are acceptable excuses in Alaska for being late to work! Especially if you bring in pictures of the critters in question!
—Guest Sue

game lover

I was discussing with my boss about something officials while one of our staff came to office at about noon. When asked by my boss he simply replied that he was seeing game of his favourite team in TV!
—Guest Sudhi


An employee called in "Got hit by lightening and cant come in"-in the background you hear her boyfriend "Get up honey, we'll be late for work".
—Guest jonb

Still Drunk

While at college, I had a job at the technology helpdesk. That place was notorious for at least one person calling in each day. My favorite story to tell is something that happened to myself. Like a good college student, I went out partying on a Friday night. I didn't work till 6pm but when I woke up, I was still drunk!! I emailed my managers stating this fact and how I wasn't comfortable being at work in that state. They had a good laugh at that and told me don't let it happen again. Needless to say, I kept my drinking to a manageable level in the future!
—Guest DrunkInDecorah


I work in health care. A nurse assistant who was always calling sick, called in to say she couldn't come to work because she had a yeast infection. Another nurse assistant I worked with would show up for work but usually leave soon after she came. She told me one night she had to go because the kids were at a city recreation center and they had a fire so she had to go pick up her kids. This happened to me. I lived in a house that was on apower grid that lost electricity at least once or twice a month. I had put my car in the garage and couldn't get it out because the electric was out and I had locked the only other door to the garage and couldn't find the key. I had to take a taxi to work and eventually showed up, but I was really late for work. I'm sure they didn't believe me,but its true.
—Guest Jane

I broke my shoe...

The heel on my shoe broke on the way to work so I had to go home to change shoes.
—Guest George

I'll just leave anyways!

My sis was in charge of scheduling at an establishment for a few years and there was one employee that was particularly ridiculous with her excuses. She would ask for literally every weekend off for her "softball games", even though she agreed when she took the job that she would work 2 weekends a month. If she was denied? She just wouldn't show up on that day. She also called in at least once a week to say she'd be a few hours late because she was dealing with wedding planning issues. How that girl never got fired is beyond me!
—Guest KiKi


I stopped giving excuses about a year ago, but I still haven't even worked a full 8-hour day in a long time. I skipped out for an entire week once by saying something to the affect of, "We were four-wheeling in the middle of nowhere and bottomed out. Had to camp out for the night and walk to the nearest highway and flag down a state trooper. The statie drove us to the nearest town to get a tow-truck, but we're stuck here until they get the new part in." When I told the "story," it was way more elaborate. Epic misadventures are kind of my thing.
—Guest Knotty K

approach the bench

I had an employee call in that they had to go to court and could not make it into work. I asked if this was jury duty. "Probably for someone but not me" he said.....Still waiting!!!
—Guest Deb

Must have

Co-worker came in 30 minutes late one day and her excuse.. "I must have hit all the lights".. There were 3 lights between her place and work
—Guest Bob

International Pancake Day

A co worker replied that she was late for work because it was International Pancake Day and IHOP was serving fee pancakes
—Guest Kathy

birthdays ... pfft!

someone phoned in once saying it was their birthday and they had to open their cards, he was an hour and a half late.
—Guest britt

soup emergency

A co-worker left for lunch and then called back in and said that she would be late coming back to work. Her husband had called and wanted soup for dinner. She had to make it before she came back to work.
—Guest Carolyn

Mother not at home

One fine morning I called one of my colleagues to find out why she was on leave, and she replied crying, "My mom and dad had a big fight, now my mother is not at home." (Later the mother was found chatting with one of the neighbors on the terrace)

I put my back out

A co-worker called in and said she was staying home because she put her back out. The number that came up on the Caller ID was an out of town # where her best friend lived.
—Guest Dee

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